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DJ JJ Boogie got his start in the electronic dance scene the way many others have, he went to a rave and was so inspired he just had to buy some turntables! But being young and perhaps not having all the means to buy them on his own, he questioned his two good friends, DJ Sugar and UncoPoco and they all went in together and bought a set up, and the rest, is well... history as they say.

Hailing from Ohio he has stayed there ever since, playing his first gig during his college years and went on to become a resident for Spundae Tru Night Life in Cleveland and is still maintaing his residency at Ritual Experience, and Groove Reactors Revolutions@Lava in Cincinnati. Learn much more about this grooving DJ and his love of the music and the scene here in our one-on-one interview with DJ JJ Boogie!

Real name: Tate Borcoman

Born: 4-12-1973

Years spinning: 9

Music types: Progressive House, Tech-House, Trance

Influences: Most recently Dave Ralph, Donald Glaude, Eric Morillo, Satoshi Tomiie

How did you get started?

In the early 90’s I started going to my first raves. As it did for so many, the parties deeply moved and influenced me. It was always the music, but also the atmosphere and the sheer fact that 2,000 people could get together so discreetly away from the mainstream and have so much fun. After just a year, I knew I wanted to be more involved in what was becoming my obsession. My two friends, DJ Sugar and UncoPoco (who would later start Groove Reactor with me), decided to split the costs on turntables 3 ways in 1995 and that was it. Never looked back.

What was the 1st record you ever bought?

The first two albums I bought were Donna Summer (I Feel Love) the original on wax and DJ Sneak (State of Emergency E.P.)

Where was your 1st gig?

My First gig was actually in college in 1996. I started playing clubs and bars in Cincinnati and Indianapolis. This was mostly done for Dick Clark’s American Bandstand as a resident and I played a limited number of shows at a few other clubs. I actually turned down an opportunity in mid-1997 to be the national resident for all of Dick Clark’s American Bandstands. I did this all while trying to crack into the rave scene. I broke into the rave scene in mid-1997 in the Dayton/Cincinnati area.

How did you end up in Cincinnati?

I left Cleveland to go to college in 1991 and decided I wanted to stay in Ohio but get as far away as I could. Cincinnati fit that bill. It’s a smaller market that has possibly hindered some of the DJs in the area that are incredibly talented, but it’s a good city and there are positive signs that we are growing.

Do you currently have any residencies?

I just finished being a regional resident for Spundae & Tru Night Life in Cleveland and I am currently a resident for Ritual Experience (www.ritualexperience.com) – these residencies are in Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati for the most part. I also am a resident at Groove Reactor’s Revolutions night at Lava in Cincinnati.

Do you currently have any albums out?

Vinyl - I have 3 albums out (2 on Groove Reactor – Phased & Confused E.P. and Slipstream E.P. and 1 on CryBaby Records – Coma Dose L.P. There is also pressing pending for something on Funktion Junktion.) On CD or Compilation, I have two new tracks coming out – a remix of Prophetica’s 1000 Times and my original work The Funktion of My Drums is being put out by EMI on Global Alliance Distribution’s Compilation CD. I’m expecting to et at least 2 more tracks out this year.

Are you in the studio now, do we have anything to look forward to in the near future, maybe some collaboration with someone else?

Right now, I am in the studio working on a full- length, mixed CD of all of my own tracks. It’s taken a bit longer than I thought it would…I think you are even more picky when you are supplying all the tracks and not just worried about the mixing when they are not yours. It’s likely that two of these tracks will be released as singles this year on one of the various labels I work with. The full length mixed CD should be out and available nationally on Groove Reactor by the Fall of 2004.

What do you think about all this mainstream techno on the radio these days? Do you think it is good for the scene or are you 100% against it selling out?

I don’t have a problem with it at all, especially if it replaces some of the regular mainstream junk that I hear. There’s always going to be people who want to keep things deep underground and those who want a more mainstream scene. As a label owner and DJ, I look at it more from a financial and even economic standpoint. As an industry (and with the CD Industry in shambles), we could really use all the extra positive media attention we can get – as well as the sales that it can turn into. The more money and exposure EDM gets, the better both the underground and the mainstream get.

What type of music do you listen to when you are not spinning?

I still occasionally listen to all my older indie bands from the mid 90’s – Pavement, The Flaming Lips, Sebadoh. They still grab my attention. Less frequently - classical, jazz, and 60’s and 70’s. I do not listen to much of anything that is mainstream radio/MTV today.Have you ever worked on a Movie Soundtrack? I have not yet although I would certainly do it for the right movie.
What are your thoughts on the scene right now locally? Our scene locally is still a work in progress but we’re getting there. We’ve got some big names coming into the clubs of late (Oakenfold, Humpty Vission) and we are seeing a lot of support for our monthly. But as usual, we would love to see a bigger push in total attendance. We’re getting there though.

Do any favorite moments in your career come to mind?

I do have a few personal favorites – playing a massive event at University of Wisconsin a few years back and following up Micro on stage. He left me a rabidly strong crowd so I plunged right into a very hard and long mix of Gouryella and Spastik. I takes everything I have to hold those two down for about 7 minutes. When I finally pull out of the mix, Micro came all the way back up on stage to shake my hand and compliment me on it. I was just then starting to get main stage gigs and it meant a lot coming from him. Playing the WEMF in Canada in 2002 as well – first time in Canada to play and there’s not too many better ways to do it.

In the many places you have performed, which venue is your most favorite?

Metropolis in Cleveland, Red Zone in Columbus, Asylum in Springfield, MA come to mind.

How has your creativity changed over the last 9 years? Do you tend to stay with your own styles/ideas or do you allow the mainstream to influence you and your work?

I’ve found that there are so many new producers and DJs out there coming out with new sounds, you have to stay creative. Looking back, I’ve come from a hard trance style to a tech-house style in just a few years. I’m more influenced by sounds that are "danceable" - if that’s a word. Meaning, if I hear a groove, riff, or drum beat that makes me want to dance – that’s going to influence me greatly. That’s probably my main goal when I produce or DJ, making people forget about what was going on and just wanting to put their drink down and go out on the floor and dance for a bit.

What is your current Goal as a DJ?

I don’t have any one goal in fact. I’d like to keep progressing as I have each year. I’d like to get a full length mixed CD out on a different label than my own in 2005, for one. Perhaps a few more international performances in the future as well.

Where do you see yourself in the next 10 years?

Geez – I don’t know. In a ditch somewhere? Haha…I’d be happy to still be playing out occasionally for the right promoters and gigs and to be concentrating mostly on producing and running the label.

What would you be doing right now if you never bought that 1st record and became a DJ?

I think I would have focused my time to writing a screenplay or a novel perhaps. Maybe I’d still be going to clubs and raves even.

OK: Last question! What, in your opinion, is the greatest aspect of being a DJ?

I think the greatest thing about being a DJ is the free drinks. No, just kidding – I’d say the thing I think is the greatest part about it is the opportunity you have to help people have a great time out, forget their troubles, and spread some smiles and laughter out there. There’s such a good feeling to be had as a DJ and as someone who goes out to hear a DJ when you really nail a set down and a true vibe is created. If you can do that when you play out more often than not, it makes all the work and b.s. worthwhile in the end.

-- written by Annalee Stone







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